Revamped tight end position
Last year’s offseason addition of Jared Cook turned out to be a real shot in the arm for the offense down the stretch, as the broad-shouldered 6-foot-5 playmaker came through by showing the ability to run past safeties and linebackers alike.
Cook, however, has never been a paragon of consistency going back to his Titans and Rams days. And his first and only season in Green Bay proved to follow the same pattern with the current Oakland Raider missing two months of the regular season with a high ankle sprain.
Alas, Packer Backers were subjected to yet another year of watching the lumbering catch-and-fall specialist Richard Rodgers as the team’s starter for an extended stretch.
Bennett, for one, brings a level of consistency that hasn’t been seen in some time in the Dairy State with five consecutive seasons of 50 grabs or more.
In addition, the 6-foot-6 target can extend plays, as evidenced by his 7.5 yards after-the-catch average, which ranked second only to Travis Kelce in 2016.
The signing of Kendricks ensures that in the event of a Bennett injury, the Packers can count on a versatile option that can line up at various positions and offer appreciably more speed than Rodgers could in that role previously.
While the Milwaukee native is more of a move tight end that can hold his own as a blocker on running plays, Bennett is more of your classic in-line weapon that can match up with defensive linemen.
Both can threaten the deep seams and allow Mike McCarthy more ways to keep opponents on their heels when opting to go with two-tight end formations..
Rodgers is still very much a part of the squad, albeit in a reduced role. But that may not last very long if last year’s practice-squad pick-up Beau Sandland shows improvement in his route running and forces the coaching staff to keep him as the third man in the tight-end rotation.